Victoria Beckham admitted in unearthed quotes that she felt “angry” and “betrayed” by Geri Halliwell when she walked out on the group halfway through their world tour. Victoria still recalled her resentment years later, when she detailed it in the 2001 tell-all Learning to Fly.
“Geri Halliwell had left us totally in the lurch,” she declared in no uncertain terms.
“She was one of my best friends and now she had walked out without a word.
“What I felt was anger at the selfishness of it all, then betrayal.”
Geri had been due to join her bandmates for a performance on the National Lottery after a show they’d done in Helsinki.
However, she failed to make an appearance, and Mel C had to inform the audience: “Unfortunately, Geri’s not very well tonight.”
That was the moment when five became four – permanently.
In spite of Mel C pointing at the camera and urging Geri to “get well soon”, it quickly emerged that her absence was about more than a spot of bad health.
Geri never returned to the group, forcing the other girls to make a public announcement in May 1998.
She later claimed there had been fights within the group – but Victoria Beckham remembered the situation quite differently.
In a trip down memory lane, she wrote: “Why she said that [we were fighting] I have no idea.
“Perhaps because it made her look better, because otherwise, it was like admitting she had left us in the lurch – which of course is exactly what she did.”
Geri is said to have retreated to her brother’s house in France to escape media attention in the aftermath of her decision.
Meanwhile, in Mel B’s book, Catch A Fire, she recalled that there had been disputes between them – but only due to their closeness.
“We got irritated over the slightest things and swore like fishwives at each other,” she reminisced.
“Our arguments went off with such a bang.
“At times you’d have thought she’d cheated with my boyfriend or something.”
Mel B clearly never lost her knack for annoying Geri, as she was less than pleased when the woman formerly known as Scary Spice claimed they’d had a sexual encounter with each other.
When she appeared on Piers Morgan’s Life Stories in 2019 – more than two decades after Geri left the group – Mel made the suggestion.
“She’s going to hate me for this because she’s all posh in her country house and her husband, but it’s a fact.
“It just happened and we just giggled at it and that was it. Hopefully, when Geri gets asked, she won’t deny it.”
Several days later, Geri did exactly that, via a statement from her rep claiming the rumour was inaccurate and “disappointing”.
The comment continued: “She would like [the fans] to know that what has been reported recently is simply not true.”